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Wine classifications AOC - Grand Crus...
[ Wine classifications AOC - Grand Crus... ]

·Sylvaner among the happy few ''grand cru'' grapes
·The 2006 Alsace Vintage
·The 2004 Alsace Vintage
·Kaefferkopf, the 51 st Alsace Grand Cru
·Screw caps for Alsace grand cru; first time ever!
·AOC reforms hit new opposition
·It's A Keeper! 2005 Alsace Wines Harvest Highlights
·The 2003 Alsace Vintage
·Alsace Wine tasting

Colmar. Nice city.


Colmar. Nice city.

Colmar. Capital of alsacian vineyards.


Colmar. Capital of alsacian vineyards.


Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC) and Grand Cru d'Alsace.Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée (AOC) and Grand Cru d'Alsace.
French Recipies and Alsacian GastronomyFrench Recipies and Alsacian Gastronomy
Growing grapes in Alsace.Growing grapes in Alsace.
History of Alsace and alsacian wine.History of Alsace and alsacian wine.
Market Export InformationsMarket Export Informations
Soils and grounds.Soils and grounds.
Travellers memories around AlsaceTravellers memories around Alsace
Wine and healthWine and health
Wine booksWine books
Wine route in Alsace.Wine route in Alsace.
Wine Tittle-TattleWine Tittle-Tattle

Burgundy and me Burgundy and me
Discover France through Alsace. Discover France through Alsace.
Events in Alsace. Events in Alsace.
Follow the Froggies: Alsace gastronomy. Follow the Froggies: Alsace gastronomy.
Inside Bordeaux Inside Bordeaux
Wine classifications AOC - Grand Crus... Wine classifications AOC - Grand Crus...

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The 2003 Alsace Vintage

The 2003 Alsace Vintage
Wine classifications AOC - Grand Crus...The Vosges are usually Alsace’s blessing, bleeding off the rain and rendering its sheltered vineyards drier and sunnier than almost anywhere else in France.


In 2003, however, the Vosges merely exacerbated the heat wave and drought experienced elsewhere. According to CIVA, it was the hottest summer since 1540, and they really do have records going back that far.

Rainfall was virtually nonexistent (11.4 cm between May and September) and temperatures were relentlessly hot – at one point exceeding 40ºC for almost two weeks continuously. There is no doubt, therefore, that 2003 was an exceptional and extraordinary vintage, but apart from Pinot Noir and a handful of anomalies, the quality will be neither exceptional nor extraordinary.
Picking started on 25 August for Crémant d’Alsace, 8 September for AOC Alsace and AOC Grand Cru, and 15 September for VT and SGN.
Generally, older vines fared better than younger ones. Vineyards on lighter soils suffered the most. North-facing vines excelled, with a number of growers contemplating extending these plantations, especially if 2003 is a wake-up call for global warming (average temperatures in Alsace have increased by 0.6ºC in the past 10 years), rather than an anomaly.
The heat and drought stress caused many vines to shut down their metabolic systems during véraison, especially Riesling, which does not like hot weather and stopped for 10 days or more.
Remarkable as it might seem for a hot year, some Riesling even failed to ripen fruit beyond the 8 per cent achieved prior to shutting down. This will be a benchmark vintage for Pinot Noir, while the most affected category of wine will be Crémant d’Alsace, because its primary grape variety, Pinot Blanc, was too concentrated, too alcoholic, and much too low in acidity for anything other than a still wine.
Some atypically superb Muscats have been made, but much of the Gewurztraminer curiously ripened without changing colour and had exceptionally thick skins.
According to Olivier Humbrecht, such Gewurztraminer grapes were sugar ripe but not physiologically ripe. “In a year like 2003,” Olivier told me, “it was more like a New World red-wine harvest than Old World white. Although most growers had picked the greater part of their crop by mid-September, the grapes were not physiologically ripe until mid-October.We had a little rain in late September, after which the vine’s metabolism started to recover, adjusting the balance of its fruit, even producing very tiny amounts of malic acid.”

Tom Stevenson
http://www.wine-pages.com
Posted on Wednesday, October 25 @ 05:35:38 MDT by pierre
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Wine classifications AOC - Grand Crus...

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Wine classifications AOC - Grand Crus...

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Colmar. Capital of alsacian vineyards.
Colmar. Capital of alsacian vineyards.

Colmar. Nice city.
Colmar. Nice city.


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